The High Level Meeting was held on July 20 th and brought together Heads of National Statistics Offices of the 14 ESCWA member countries, or their representatives, to: (i) learn about the objectives, strategies, the governance framework, the methodological innovations and improvements, the budgetary provisions and the timetable of the ICP 2011 round at global level; (ii) discuss the regional fundraising strategy; (iii) form the ICP Regional Advisory Board; and (iv) discuss the regional work plan and budget. The meeting also addressed the issue of Iran’s participation in ESCWA meetings as an observer.
Following extensive and fruitful discussions, the meeting:
- Established the Regional Advisory Board [RAB], elected Oman’s head of NSO as chair for the entire ICP 2011 round and formed the Executive Board [EB], an executive body of the RAB, composed of 5 countries [Egypt, Jordan, Oman, Palestine and Yemen] and headed by the RAB Chair. The main responsibility of the EB is to promote the ICP in the Western Asia region and address related issues in the region such as fund-raising, outreach and visibility.
- Resolved that the implementation of the 2011 round of the ICP will require a minimum budget of around 2 Million Dollars, of which USD 200,000 are available as carry over from the 2005 round.
- Approved the draft memorandum of understanding between ESCWA and each participating country.
- Acknowledged the new ICP round as a capacity building exercise, in terms of incorporating as much as possible the work of the ICP within national regular work plans. This entails estimating the total cost of the ICP activities in each country and identifying the gaps and additional costs that could not be borne from national budgets program.
- Deferred the conclusive discussion on the Iran case to the next meeting.